I have been vegetarian for many years but never vegan, and to be honest I am not sure that I could be classed as vegan now because I still eat eggs.
It started in the spring of 2018, I run and sometimes my run takes me through the fields where the cows from the dairy farm are. The more I was running past these fields, the more I came to know the cows; I watched them as they increased in size with their growing calves as they waddled around the fields. Then one day they were gone, they had gone to the barns to have their calves.
I heard them as they bellowed, I heard their calves crying back, I watched as young calves were taken from their mothers and placed in a separate barn. Their cries broke my heart, these beautiful creatures I had come to know in the prior months, I had watched as their bellies grew bigger and I knew they would never know their young but until I saw and heard it, I had not registered how wrong this is.
These beautiful animals are simply milking machines giving us milk (that is actually bad for humans!).
In the weeks that followed the cows were returned to some grazing, their udders heavy and every so often a bellow could be heard searching for a young that had long since been taken away.
This is the point I said no more dairy. I cannot say it has been easy, I loved cheese, yoghurt was my go to breakfast but I have found alternatives and they are good.
It is a choice we make and I can honestly say I feel better for it. I have chosen not to eat meat or dairy, but I still eat free range eggs (hence why I question if I am actually vegan), I no longer wear my favourite leather jacket, I use a non leather handbag and where possible I wear only my non leather shoes, I don’t use toiletries that contain animal or dairy.
To anyone thinking about going on the vegan journey, you have to make the choice and for me the choice was in many ways made for me, now there are many great products out there and fantastic recipes.
Next time I will give you an update on the products I have tried and tested and would happily recommend.